||NSI Technology Services Corp., Research Triangle Park, NC. ;ManTech Environmental Technology, Inc., Research Triangle Park, NC.;Health Effects Research Lab., Research Triangle Park, NC. Developmental Toxicology Div.
The toxicity exhibited by murine erythroleukemic cells (MELC) exposed to tributyltin (TBT) is a function of both concentration (C) and duration of exposure (T). At or above a critical C x T product value (CPV), exposed MELC exhibit severe, irreversible toxicity: decreased membrane integrity (viability, measured by propidium iodide (PI) exclusion), grossly perturbed cell cycle distributions, and fixation of the plasma membrane/cytoplasm complex. Below the CPV, exposed cells exhibit retention of carboxyfluorescein (CF) fluorescence (indicative of decreased plasma membrane permeability) and decreased cell proliferation, a result of retardation of progression into, through, and out of the S (DNA synthetic) phase of the cell cycle. However, following washout and recovery, mean CF fluorescence, cell proliferative capacity, and cell-cycle kinetics return to control levels. These results suggest that the toxic changes induced by TBT exposure may be reversible if exposure conditions do not exceed the CPV.